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Thread: Choosing the Right software

  1. #1
    Coastercraze's Avatar
    Coastercraze is offline Net Builder Legend
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    Exclamation Choosing the Right software

    In today's world, there are over thousands of different scripts to choose from in order to build a community. When you are starting out, this is one of the biggest choices you have to make. Here's some help when deciding as to which platform to mold your creation onto.

    First things first, you must decide whether you want to use free software or paid software. Open source is great for those who don't have a whole lot of money, or who just paid all that money on a nice hosting plan. Currently, these are the top picks when it comes to free forum software:

    * phpBB
    * SMF (Simple Machines Forum)
    * MyBB

    Paid software is great for those who want to really blast their community off and are serious about security and want to modify their forums with a bunch of things. If you are looking at paying for forum software, the following are the top picks in paid forum software:

    * vBulletin
    * Invision Power Board
    * WowBB

    Once you decide on the pricetag, the next thing to do is take a look at the main features each forum script provides. You can actually compare tons of them side by side and narrow down your choices drastically. Go to ForumMatrix - Compare Them All and select any of the ones on the side. Then go to the top of the left column and hit the orange button that says Compare.

    After comparing the main features of the forum scripts, let's take a deeper look...

    Open the link to each of the forum scripts you are choosing and take a look at any forums they have or if they offer a demo, go ahead and try it out! The biggest thing people make a mistake on is the admin control panel. If you are one of those people who want to get things done in a hurry (like me) then you'll want to highly consider what the admin control panel looks like and how it may impact you down the road.

    Some other things you might want to consider are how the forums main index looks, how the forums post, how the user profiles work, how customizable it is, and whether it uses templates or old fashioned HTML and PHP pages.

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    Will.Spencer (21 April, 2009)

  3. #2
    Will.Spencer's Avatar
    Will.Spencer is offline Retired
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    Awesome post!

    I started with phpBB and I switched to vBulletin.

    But, I am now strongly considering two options not listed in the ForumMatrix -- Fireboard and Agora.

    I have to make a decision soon, the new forum is scheduled to open within a month.
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    GameOver's Avatar
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    This is a good resource for new forum owners. I have used both mybb, phpbb and vbulletin in the past and vbulletin is by far the best. Although if someone is limited with their budget (especially with new sites), mybb is an excellent option because there are free templates avaliable that make it look identical (or very close) to vbulletin and is has most/all of the features that vbuletin has anyway.

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    dvduval is offline Newbie Net Builder
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    I also started with phpBB and then switched to vBulletin.
    vBulletin is pretty tough to beat now. They really have a solid offering.
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    phpBB is the best free thing there is, though vBulletin is way much better if you can afford it

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    Zash's Avatar
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    MyBB is the best free forum software out there. phpBB is complete crap, being slow, unorganized, and just plain ugly. MyBB has all of the features of vBulletin.

    The only thing that's missing is the huge database of plugins. However, it has every plugin you will probably need without going overboard.
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    GameOver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zash View Post
    MyBB is the best free forum software out there. phpBB is complete crap, being slow, unorganized, and just plain ugly. MyBB has all of the features of vBulletin.

    The only thing that's missing is the huge database of plugins. However, it has every plugin you will probably need without going overboard.
    I agree. I have used both in the past and would not even consider using phpBB again.

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    Hellas is offline Very Unusual Member
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    I am big fan of smf. It is so simple and stable board. Far years ahead of phpbb.

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    infotech is offline Unknown Net Builder
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    Another good solution for forums which is often overlooked is Drupal.


    Andrew

  11. #10
    Will.Spencer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by infotech View Post
    Another good solution for forums which is often overlooked is Drupal.
    What is a good forum extension for Drupal?

    I could not find one when I looked.
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